Quick blogging survey
Alice Bell is conducting some research for us at IET, so this is asking you (yes YOU) to participate. Alice says "email answers to firstname.lastname@example.org. Or you can cut and paste it to post it on your blog, if you want to share your answers with your readers (although please drop me a line with the link so I can make sure I have a copy)"
Well, I'd best respond too:
What do you blog about?
Digital scholarship, Open education, educational technology, social media, impact of new technology.
Are you paid to blog?
What do you do professionally (other than blog)?
I'm a Professor of Educational Technology at the Open University.
How long have you been blogging at this site?
Do you write in other platforms? (e.g. in a print magazine?)
I've published books and academic papers, and occasionally (when asked) for other publications eg Chronicle of Higher Education, but not on a regular basis
Can you remember why you started blogging?
My colleagues John Naughton and Tony Hirst had been doing it for a while, and I read lots of blogs, so it seemed like a natural progression.
What keeps you blogging?
It's a habit and it provides an outlet for ideas that would otherwise never see the light of day. It is also part of my academic identity now, so there is an element of inertia in keeping it going.
Do you have any idea of the size or character if your audience? How?
It has about 2000 subscribers plus gets around 30,000 visits a year (Google Analytics). Most of the audience are practitioners in higher ed with an interest in technology, but across a range of disciplines.
What’s your attitude to/relationship with people who comment on your blog?
They are often people I've come to know either personally or through twitter. Much of the commenting now happens away from the blog, on twitter. I'm always pleased that someone takes the effort to comment, although which posts will attract comments is very unpredictable. They are nearly always friendly, and helpful – pointing me at other resources or helping to develop an argument.
Do you feel as if you fit into any particular community, network or genre of blogging? (e.g. schools, science, education, museums, technology)
Edubloggers (I guess)
If so, what does that community give you?
I've come to think of it as my extended, global, network of peers, very similar (but bigger) to my peer network at work.
What do you think are the advantages of blogging? What are its disadvantages/ limitations?
I think I covered the advantages in this piece: http://chronicle.com/article/The-Virtues-of-Blogging-as/131666/
Disadvantages are that it probably has decreased the amount of traditional publication I've done (which may impact on things like the REF). There is a small element of compulsion to it – I tend to blog on average about once a week, so if a few weeks have gone by, I feel I shoud blog _something_.
Do you tell people you know offline that you’re a blogger? (e.g. your grandmother, your boss)
I don't think my parents know what a blog is, but most other people know that I blog eg friends, family. I don't think (or expect) that they read it as it's quite narrowly focused on educational technology, ie I don't blog about my holiday.
Is there anything else you want to tell me about I haven’t asked?
I've said too much already…